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Author Topic: Thoughts on a 2 x AMD 6790 Rig?  (Read 1075 times)
jeremiahbuddha
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June 28, 2011, 06:36:19 AM
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I'm very new to bitcoin, and only a novice with Linux. I've been trying to get my brain around mining for the past couple days, and at the same time price out a mining rig that can double as a general linux-box playground for me. I've settled on a setup which would use two Sapphire Radeon HD 6790 in Ubuntu 11.04 to do the mining. I haven't seen much on using the 6790, anyone have any comments about this for a rig?

My top three questions about moving forward and buying this rig are:

1.) Will I be able to find drivers for the 6790 in Ubuntu, and how difficult will it be to find software to get them online and mining? (My concern is that setting up the cards/miner will be a repeat of my effort to get my old D-Link wireless card working with Ubuntu ... i.e. 12 hours of frustration ending in defeat)
2.) Is it difficult to get both cards mining simultaneously, or is that a standard feature in most mining software packages?
3.) Does constant mining wear out the cards really quickly? How long can I expect them to last?

I'm sure there are threads somewhere on these topics. I have and will continue to look for them, but if you have any helpful comments or links, I'd be obliged.
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ThomasC
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June 28, 2011, 06:49:05 AM
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Check out this https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Mining_hardware_comparison
It will give you some detailed information Smiley

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Soak
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June 28, 2011, 07:11:30 AM
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2.) Is it difficult to get both cards mining simultaneously, or is that a standard feature in most mining software packages?

I have 2 Sapphire Radeon HD 6970 in Crossfire. For mining, I launch 2 miners with DEVICE=0 and DEVICE=1 for target each card.
Reikoku
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June 28, 2011, 07:36:16 AM
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1.) Will I be able to find drivers for the 6790 in Ubuntu, and how difficult will it be to find software to get them online and mining? (My concern is that setting up the cards/miner will be a repeat of my effort to get my old D-Link wireless card working with Ubuntu ... i.e. 12 hours of frustration ending in defeat)

The drivers are really easy, Ubuntu is very user-friendly and it'll ask you when you boot into it whether you want to install proprietary drivers. If it doesn't, it's a quick search through their software repo.

I've only used Arch (another Linux distribution) so I can't comment on how easy AMD APP SDK is to get, but that's the main other thing you need.

2.) Is it difficult to get both cards mining simultaneously, or is that a standard feature in most mining software packages?

Some (diablominer et al.) run all your cards on one instance of the miner. Others (phoenix) require you to launch an instance for each card. I've written some software (Autominer, in my sig) which you can configure once and it'll fire up all of your miners in a nice user-friendly window whenever you run it.

3.) Does constant mining wear out the cards really quickly? How long can I expect them to last?

It will do if they run too hot, or very high voltage. I think otherwise you're looking at years, graphics cards aren't known for dying early and if they do, you should be able to get them replaced under warranty assuming you didn't flash the BIOS.

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Bert
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June 28, 2011, 08:11:02 AM
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1)
2)
To install your rig follow this install guide http://forum.bitcoin.org/index.php?topic=9239.0

Where it says "ati-driver-installer-11-5-x86.x86_64.run" substitute  "ati-driver-installer-11-6-x86.x86_64.run", it has better overclocking.

I stopped following the guide at "Setup Headless Bitcoin Mining "

3) Difficult to say, if you don't overclock and have the motherboard well ventilated (heat dissipation is a real problem), they should last for at least the warranty duration.
1KW/hr is about the power used by a boiling electric kettle and a mining rig generally uses from 0.5Kw/hr to 1KW/hr of electricity. So you could think of a mining rig as a kettle boiling with no water in it. Lots of heat to be removed.

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tool_462
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June 28, 2011, 08:40:50 AM
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3.) Does constant mining wear out the cards really quickly? How long can I expect them to last?


Given sufficient airflow and good temps, the cards should last indefinitely.  GPU based distributed computing projects are known to be skilled at killing cards but usually that is due to one or more of 3 things:

1) Bad temps (bad airflow, etc)

2) "Dirty" power (low quality PSU with dodgy 12v rails are usually the cause)

3) Excessive load on VRMs.  Usually you won't have any VRM issues with cards that have enough airflow, some cards are known to have insufficient cooling on their VRMs for 24/7 100% load operation but fortunately no "repeat offenders" are common Bitcoin mining cards.  Folding@Home and GPUGrid forums will have lots of info on what cards to avoid.

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jeremiahbuddha
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June 29, 2011, 11:32:21 PM
 #7

Thanks everyone. I ordered the rig, will try to get it setup this weekend...
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